Immigration to Nicaragua
Living and working in Nicaragua
Nicaragua, thе largеst Cеntral Amеrican country situatеd bеtwееn thе Pacific Ocеan and thе Caribbеan Sеa, is rеnownеd for its lakеs, volcanoеs, and stunning bеachеs. Notablе attractions includе Lakе Managua and Volcano Momotombo to thе north of thе capital city, Managua, and thе Spanish architеctural monumеnts of Granada to thе south, along with an archipеlago of small islands tееming with tropical bird lifе. Whilе Nicaragua is gеnеrally safе for visitors, еxеrcising caution duе to thе prеsеncе of violеnt crimеs is advisablе. Bordеrеd by Honduras and El Salvador in thе north and Costa Rica in thе south, Nicaragua is cеlеbratеd for its divеrsе cuisinе, fеaturing sеafood from its еxpansivе coast, dееp-friеd plantains, ricе and bеans, and bеvеragеs likе thе Macuá cocktail madе from lеmon, guava, and rum.
Living and Working in Nicaragua prеsеnts various advantagеs for immigrants. Job opportunitiеs abound, and thе Nicaraguan govеrnmеnt facilitatеs еxpats in obtaining privatе hеalth insurancе. Forеignеrs can also purchasе propеrty, and thе govеrnmеnt еncouragеs invеstmеnts from forеign buyеrs. Sеttling down is uncomplicatеd, fostеring a homе-likе atmosphеrе swiftly. Thе locals arе friеndly, making it еasy to form connеctions, and thе country boasts a low cost of living. Nicaragua’s vibrant culturе, spicy food, and divеrsе drinks contributе to its appеal, along with somе of thе world’s bеst bеachеs. Bеyond tourism, Nicaragua’s immigration appеal liеs in its safеty, affordability, and wеlcoming atmosphеrе for thosе sееking a nеw placе to livе.
The Nicaraguan government has opened borders for tourists and immigrants. A vaccination or a negative PCR test not older than 72 hours is required on arrival. However, foreigners showing sign of Covid-19 will not be permitted to enter. All those arriving to Nicaragua must fill the entry and exit application for visitors of other nationalities. Please refer to solicitudes.migob.gob.ni. The form is available in Spanish and English.
Nicaragua is a safe destination for foerigners, however the social and political upheaval is of great concern for the government inspite of continous efforts to improve safety especailly in tourist areas. There has been cases pf voilent crimes, petty crimes like pickpockets & purse snatchers. Than there been incidents of sexual assaults, climate and natural disasters, so please check before you venture into Nicaragua and be alert to dangers. It is wise to take a travel insurance covering your travel, lost baggage, protect against pandemic and other medical treatment.
How to immigrate to Nicaragua -Immigration Regulations
To move to Nicaragua you need to know the visa and residence requirements.
Passports should be valid upto six months after the date of your entry into the nation. Citizens of UK, US, Guatemala, El Salvador, Scandinavia, Honduras, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and the European Union (EU) does not need visa to visit this country. There is a tourist card for $10, which is valid for 90 days upon arrival. Citizens of other than these countries either need a visa or a tourist cards allowing a 30-day stay. These people must also get the exit permit, but if you are on a business trip then you are exempted from this requirement. You can apply for the visa by yourself or you may hire a person who advises and undertakes the appointment scheduling, form filling and paperwork on your behalf.
If you are a U.S. citizen or have a U.S. passport then show the passport or the passport card, U.S. Resident Alien Card (Green Card) or U.S. visa to the authority. Children and teenagers below 18 years must also travel with valid passport. They should show the signed and notarized letter in Spanish certifying permission from at least one parent, while traveling alone or accompanied by a non-parent person or the guardian like grandparent, school group, etc.
Pensionado: This nation’s government has passed the legislation to invite the retirees and pensioners to stay in Nicaragua. The Law gives tax incentives as benefits to the pensioners and retirees. To get this you need to prove the government that you are a citizen of the country where you claim your nationality, that you have a good physical and mental health, that you do not have any criminal record, and you have an income for at least $700 per month from pension.
Rentista: This residency permit is similar to the previous one, except earning $750 per month is necessary, whether it is generated from investments, certificates of deposits, stocks, and retirement plans. You can get the same benefits as importing household goods and a vehicle.
Investor: This class is available to any expat who wants to invest more than $30,000 in any type of business in this country, may it be tourism, real estate, natural resources, fishing, etc. You need to pass the inspection done by the Nicaraguan government and go through the several destinations to get the approval. This residency is also eligible for investor’s family.
One you get the residency permit, you are issued a cédula, also called as the Nicaraguan green card.
Citizens of the Nicaragua are called Nicaraguans. Nicaraguans are mix of indigenous and migrated people. More than eighty percent population lives in the urban areas and very little population in the rural areas. The main religion followed here is Catholicism, as there are more than eighty five percent people are Catholic, approx fourteen percent are atheist and rest other religion. These people are generally polite, courteous and charming. They are known for their natural warmth, hospitality and wisdom. This nation is considered as a producer of poets, as the famous Nicaraguan poet Ruben Dario is the starter of Spanish-American literary movement. Even in casual meet, they address each other with love and respect. To greet a person, shaking hands, a squeeze of arm and a hug is common. Families are closely knitted and at difficult times they stand with each other.
There are different ethnic groups in Nicaragua such as Mestizo Nicaraguan, White Nicaraguan, Amerindian Nicaraguan, Arab Nicaraguan, Jewish Nicaraguan, Afro Nicaraguan, Asian Nicaraguan, German Nicaraguan. Skin color ranges here from white to black and most people are of mixed race. A person of Indian or Spanish descent is called Mestizo. Most of Nicaraguan people are mestizos. These people live in towns and villages, in South Nicaragua.
Job offers in Nicaragua
Many foreigners from nearby country come to Nicaragua for work as this is the biggest country in Central America and has the biggest city in the region. Nicaragua is one of the tourist’s attractions in the world. It is the country visited by many expats for tourism and jobs. There are many jobs available in the tourism industry, especially on shores. The rising numbers of job hunters are mostly towards these shores to find a better place to work and retire to.
English in high demand, so you can get jobs accordingly. There are various opportunities if you are interested in ESL teaching. English teachers require a university degree and ac certificate from Nicaragua ESL of TEFL. Due to the increase in tourism and economic growth, the Nicaraguan government is concerned about more people to should achieve English fluency. If you have skills in other profession, there are also many opportunities in other fields as well. Jobs in Nicaragua will also help you to expand your network and develop your skills.
Spanish is also important to get a job in this country. Expats who wants to work in Nicaragua must get a visa. Foreigner working in the Nicaragua should get a temporary residency visa with the permission to work. To get the temporary residence visa documents you need are two passport size photographs and a valid passport with six months validity.
Jobs in demand are Teaching English, Resort Manager or other staff, advertising, marketing, Accounting, etc.
How to get a job offer:
- Search online.
- Give interview online or in person.
- Sign a contract offered by the Company.
- Submit your documents in order to get a legit job.
For more information please visit: internations.org
The unemployment rate in Nicaragua is 3.7% in the year 2022. It is expected to be 4.3% by the end of this quarter, by the models and analysts. The rate was 5.96% in the previous year with a fall of 0.12% from the year 2020. The jobless rate refers to the share of working force that is unemployed but is available for work and seeking for it. The rate is so low because of the absence of a system of unemployment benefits, like many other countries. This is the lowest unemployment rate since the pandemic has started in the year 2020 as the employed population increased and the number of unemployed decreased. At the same time the number of economically active population has risen.
For more information please visit: tradingeconomics.com
Nicaragua has a mixed economy which consists of types of private freedom and mixed with centralized economic planning and government regulation. This country’s economic score is 54.8, ranking as 122nd freest in the 2022 Index. This economy is focused on the agricultural sector. This is a least developed country in the Central America. Agriculture and food production is this country’s top industry, with products like banana, coffee, copper, cotton, maize, rice, sugarcane, soybeans, other beans and timber. With agriculture industry, mining, chemicals, machinery and metal products, knit and woven apparel, petroleum refining and distribution, beverages, footwear, wood, electric wire harness manufacturing and poultry are also pillars to support the economy. Food, beverages, chemicals, tobacco, steel and iron, vehicles, clothing, consumer durables and tourism are also the industries contributing the economy. This nation is a big exporter of gold, coffee, beef, sugar, peanuts, shrimp and lobster, cigars, automobile wiring harnesses, textiles, apparels. This economy has had unprecedented macro economy stability, which has reduced the inflation and rates, but the medium term growth area has become weak which results the growth since the last two decades has been very less. This is one of the reasons why, the poverty rate and inequality is on its peak in this country. Some other reasons are a slow functioning credit market, policies creating incentives for informality, ineffective market regulation and competition at the international market.
For more information please visit: en.wikipedia.org
Renting and buying of real estates for foreigners
Renting a house in Nicaragua is not quite hard as buying a property. The Nicaraguan rental market is growing fast, with the growth of rental websites on the internet. Renting an apartment or a house is cheaper in Nicaragua than many other countries in North America and Europe, such as United States, Canada, United Kingdom and Germany. The most expensive city in this county is the capital of itself, the Managua. The amount of rent may vary from city to city as it depends on the neighborhood, subways, market, size of the property, main city. Prices in the major cities are comparatively higher than the rural areas. Major cities like San Juan del Sur, Granada, and Leon, etc are also expensive.
- Identity Card
- Documents issued by the Nicaraguan Government
- Rental agreement
Expats can buy property in this country and the government welcomes investment from overseas buyers. There are no restrictions on buying or owning a property in this country and the process is almost same for the citizens or foreigners. Also owning a property gives a sense of responsibility and happiness. Many think or buying a property in Nicaragua due to the attractive property prices. Here also, while buying a property, prices may vary due to various aspects. For instance, the property is in the city centre or is in outskirts, its size, near the coastline or in the middle of the country, etc. Apart from the house price you will also need to pay the agency fees, notary and lawyer’s fee, acquisition fee, registration fee and the title insurance.
- Identity Card
- Mortgage papers
- Promissory Agreement with the payment
- Purchase or Sale Agreement
- Title transfer papers
- Taxes Slips
The climate in Nicaragua is tropical climate with bit variations in the temperature. Here you will get two distinct rainfall seasons wet and dry. It is also dry (Canicula) for sometime in the month of late July and in the month of early August. In the month of July to October there are heavy rainfall and strong winds, as a result there are also Pacific cyclones and Hurricanes. Also the El Nino Southern Oscillation fluctuations in the June and August causes warmer and drier or colder and wetter climate. Rainy and dry seasons come along with slight temperature fluctuation. The average temperature all over the country throughout the year is between 10˚C to 33˚C. There are also regional variations in Nicaragua’s weather. On the coastal areas some months are rainy and some are dry and mild all year round.
Wet Season: This season starts from the month of May and ends in the month of October.
Dry Season: Dry season starts from the month of November and ends in the month of April.
For more information please visit: climateknowledgeportal.worldbank.org
The national language of Nicaragua is Spanish. There is a little difference between the Spanish language spoken in the European countries and the Spanish spoken in this country. Nicaraguans also speak indigenous languages and English. This country has four extinct indigenous languages. Approx 90% of the population of this nation speak in Spanish. Some Nicaraguans can speak both the language Spanish and English. English is also widely spoken among foreigners from the US and Canada and in the tourism sector. On the coastal areas like Caribbean coast, due to the African and English heritage, in places like Bluefields, Pearl Lagoon and on the Corn Islands, this language is used in the form of English creole by most of the population there.
Foreign languages spoken in this country are Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian and Japanese, etc. Other than these, various indigenous languages are also widely spoken in Nicaragua such as Miskito, Mayagna/Sumo/Sumu and Rama. Sign languages used by the deaf people are Nicaraguan sign language. This nation has many minority groups, many ethnic groups are Chinese Nicaraguan, Palestinian Nicaraguans, who have maintained the ancestral language while also speaking English and Spanish. Other minority languages are Arabic, German, Italian, etc.
For more information please visit: en.wikipedia.org
Education in Nicaragua follows a systеm that includеs prе-primary, primary, sеcondary, and highеr еducation lеvеls. Thе primary еducation is frее and compulsory for childrеn agеd 6 to 12, typically covеring six gradеs. Whilе еducation is еncouragеd, attеndancе ratеs can vary duе to socio-еconomic factors. Elеmеntary еducation is compulsory and providеd by both public and privatе institutions. For intеrnational studеnts, Nicaragua offеrs various schools and univеrsitiеs. Immigrants and еxpats’ childrеn can еnroll in both local and intеrnational schools. Thе San Juan dеl Sur Day School stands out as thе primary altеrnativе for еxpat childrеn, offеring an English-languagе еducation apart from homеschooling. Thе school providеs a challеnging acadеmic curriculum aimеd at cultivating critical thinking, crеativity, and a passion for lеarning, catеring to childrеn agеd 5 and oldеr. Notablе univеrsitiеs includе thе National Autonomous Univеrsity of Nicaragua (UNAN), Cеntral Amеrican Univеrsity (UCA), and thе Polytеchnic Univеrsity of Nicaragua (UPOLI). Thеsе institutions attract intеrnational studеnts sееking divеrsе acadеmic opportunitiеs in a culturally rich еnvironmеnt.
Road conditions in this country are not like the conditions of the roads in the United States or Canada. Driving here consists of much risks and difficulties. To drive in this country as a foreigner you need an international driving permit. Driving is on the right side of the road in this nation. Some of the motorways or highways connecting the big cities are in good condition. With some exceptions, roads in the rural or urban areas are in bad condition, repaired, potholed, poorly lit, narrow, and lack shoulders. It is suggested not to drive after its dark as it is hazardous, if it is not necessary do not come on road after 10 pm to midnight. Driving here is rough, unlike Europe and America.
There is a lot of traffic and cars try to change the lane without indication. Roads are also a big gripe to the locals as well as the visitors. Traffic jams are common in Managua city and you can easily stick in for an hour or two. If you don’t want to experience the jam then it’s a friendly advice to be more attentive while driving as not all the people follow the driving rules.
The rush hours are 7 am to 10 am and 5 pm to 8 pm as students and workers are on the road to reach their destination such as Office and School. You can roam in this country by metro or by taxi. You can also hire a rental car in the city you are planning to stay in Nicaragua.
- International Driving permit
- Vehicle Registration Proof
For more information visit: countryreports.org
Nicaragua’s official currency is Córdoba. The sign for the Córdoba is C$ same as US Dollar, they have the common origin from Spanish dollar. The Córdoba is divided into 100 centavos. The currency is printed by the Bank of Nicaragua and the paper currency is in eight denominations, which are C$5, C$10, C$20, C$50, C$100, C$200, C$500, C$1000 and coins as centavo in 5, 10, 25, 50, C$1, C$5, C$10. The United States Dollar is also accepted widely in this country at most tourist locations. But you will get discounts at bars, stores, restaurants and some hotels only if you use the local currency not the US Dollar. As well as bargaining is also difficult if you have foreign currency but with Córdoba you can haggle easily.
Nicaraguans prefer to pay through cash, cards or online. Payments with MasterCards, Visa credit or debit card. People, who don’t use these options, use famous online cash payment options, such as e-Wallet and Bank Transfers which includes PayPal, UnionPay, Allied Wallet, swift, razor gold, Tigo Money, Mobiamo, Boloro, G2A Pay, EMVCo. Banco Lafise, Neteller, Splitit or Skrill, etc. There are several methods of payment transactions in this county, some are mentioned below:
- Hyper Wallet: It allows companies to make payments to any person in a variety of different ways consisting bank transfer, to a gift card even via cheque.
- Paysera Wallet: Also a money transfer option, providing a range of banking services.
- Boku: An easy way of payment also for the customers who do not have a bank account or don’t have a credit card.
- BitPay: It is an e-wallet for Bitcoins. It allows you to receive, store or pay in Bitcoin or Bitcoin Cash.
For more information visit: ppro.com
Cost of living in Nicaragua
According to a survey the cost of living in the Nicaragua is cheaper than the 87% of countries in North America and Europe and the cost of living in the Managua city is cheaper than the 71% of cities in the World. Average living cost in this country depends upon your lifestyle or your current situation, like whether you are working or a student. Cost of living varies from city to city and also if you are staying alone or with your family. The average monthly expense for a single person is approximately C$26,532. And the monthly expense will rise if you want to move along with your family of four persons, which will be C$66,256. Monthly rent will cost more in the main city than the rent in rural areas. Expense will also rise if you need bigger accommodation, than the smaller one.
Food is cheap and if you are staying in a city where you can go by bicycle, walking till your college or office or live in a city where it has a good public transport system, then your cost of living will be much lower. Average living cost depends upon your lifestyle or your current situation, like whether you are working or a student.
Here are some products mentioned below, so that you will get a clear idea of the cost of living:
Amount in Nicaraguan Córdoba (C$)
Whole Fat Milk
12 (a dozen)
1 Kg (2 lb.)
500 grams (1 lb)
Fast food meal
8 mbps (1 month)
Public transport ticket
For more info visit: www.expatistan.com
Managua is the most expensive place to rent a residential property, followed by Granada and San Juan del Sur in Nicaragua. Also the city of Léon in the western Nicaragua has the expensive apartments. Fully furnished one bedroom apartment in the city centre will cost you approx C$15,542 and same apartment, outside city will cost approx C$9,030. A furnished studio apartment of 2 to 3 bedrooms in the city centre will cost you approx C$16,670 and outside the city it will cost you approx $10,168. After visiting on the below given link you will get the ideas of the cost of monthly rent. You can find the apartments online or with the help of a local friend. Property showing websites also mentions prices below so that you can choose according to your need and comfort. You can ask your coworkers or at the local cafes, tea stalls or small shops, if they know any rental apartment, it is better to take along your Spanish speaking friend. There are sign boards of “To Let” people put in front of the house if they have an apartment, so while walking on the streets you can look for those or you can hire a broker, he will also help you to get a better accommodation.
For more info visit: expatistan.com
There are different types of taxes in Nicaragua. Also there are tax benefits for legal retirees who have a resident’s card. Incentives in the way of paying no taxes from money earned outside the country. Also they can have legal residence up to five years and after these years they can renew it. Import one automobile without paying import tax or protective tariff and also they can sell the automobile after five years, etc. Also there are Income tax, VAT/Sales tax, transfer tax, property tax, etc. Citizens and taxpayers have some rights and duties. The obligation to pay taxes is a way to contribute to public spending. In Nicaragua, income tax rate is 30%. The personal income tax is collected from every citizen, which they have applied on various source of income, such as pensions, labor, dividends and interests. Revenue generated from this tax rate is an important source of income for the Nicaraguan government. Every resident of Nicaragua is subject to pay income tax on his worldwide income, despite of their nationality. Non residents and citizens of this country who prove their residence for tax reasons in a foreign country are taxed only on their Nicaraguan source of income.
The government of this country guarantees universal free health care for its citizens. Still there are limitations of latest delivery models and non-similar distribution of resources and medical people’s contribution to the constant lack of quality care in the rural areas of Nicaragua in the central and Atlantic region. There are two sectors in healthcare system of this country, public and private sector. Private healthcare sectors are run by the health insurance companies or non-governmental organizations. These companies and organizations provide better medical services all over the country. The best clinics or hospitals require payment before treatment. Hence, it is suggested to expats, to take a health insurance plan to access quality medical services. There are many websites available on the internet, providing global medical coverage for some local nationals in this country. Nicaragua expat healthcare plans are available through their firm from a variety of international insurance companies.
Augusto Cesar Sandino International Airport
11 Carretera Norte,
Ph: +505 2276 9180
Costa Esmeralda International Airport
Km 16, Carretera Tola,
Las Salinas 48500,
Ph: +505 2562 1000
Ph: +505 8445 5280
Antigua Estación del Ferrocarril Railway Station:
Old Train Station:
Terminal de Autobuses Mercado Roberto Huembes:
Pista de La Solidaridad,
Terminal de Buses:
Embassy of Germany:
4P7R+RJ8, Managua 14043
Embassy of Honduras:
Edificio Opus II, Planes de Altamira 3ra etapa,
modulo 205, Managua 14042,
Ph: +505 2270 2347
Embassy of Panama:
Casa No. 51, Camino Nuevo a Sto. Domingo,
Las Sierritas, Managua 14299,
Ph: +505 2277 0501
Embassy of Colombia:
Ph: +505 8527 6972
Nicaragua, a Central American country, situated between Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, famous for its lakes, volcanoes, and breathtaking beaches with scenic views, pleasant climate and a fun spot for adventurous people. Nicaragua is culturally accessible with rich history, has flora and fauna and great food. Major cities like Managua, Granada, Leon gives you a taste of the ancient and modern atmosphere. People are hospitable, friendly, fashionable, happy, modern and trendy. It is easy to settle down in Nicaragua and you feel the home like atmosphere very quickly. Nicaragua provides universal free healthcare to all. Cost of living in Nicaragua is relatively cheap than the countries in the North America and Europe. It is one of the most visited countries for tourism and jobs in Central America. There are many jobs available in the tourism industry. English in high demand, so you can get jobs accordingly. Nicaragua is a good destination for immigration in 2024, both for retirees and those seeking a job here. There may be some challenges like language, inadequate healthcare system, petty crimes, internet connectivity and power outage in some areas.
Moving to Nicaragua
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